Will My Children Also Have Type 1 Diabetes?

Will My Children Also Have Type 1 Diabetes? | www.IAmAType1Diabetic.comDon’t worry family; I am not pregnant, and there is no way I’d let you find out this way!

But honestly, I do have a lot of fears about being pregnant and having type 1 diabetes. My endocrinologist suggested I get my hemoglobin A1c under 6.5% before we even try. I have achieved that goal about 6 months back, with my last A1c being 6.2%, and my doctor was very pleased. But, that is not the point!

I still have fears about much life can change. Are we really ready to handle how much life will change? How will I manage my blood sugars while having an infant? Will I be able to keep my blood sugars in a “good enough” range while breastfeeding? If I have a bad blood sugar for a few days, could I possibly loose the baby altogether? If my A1c doesn’t get better/lower, will I have a huge baby? or will they have to stay in the hospital because of low blood sugars?  Will me having type 1 diabetes mean that I could easily pass it onto my future children?

I don’t mind being a diabetic. It’s just another part of my story. But, I want my children to live long, healthy lives, and not have to battle with their blood sugars. I know it’s a struggle, and I would feel horrible passing the same burden onto them! I started looking around for some answers. The American Diabetes Association had a great article on the probability of a type 1 diabetic passing along the gene to their children.

According to the American Diabetes Association, genes alone are not enough to determine whether or not you’ll pass type 1 diabetes onto your children. You only inherit a predisposition to the disease, then something in your environment triggers it (e.g. stress in my case, an illness etc.) “Identical twins have identical genes. Yet when one twin has type 1 diabetes, the other gets the disease at most only half the time.”

In most cases of type 1 diabetes, people need to inherit risk factors from both parents. I guess I am an odd man out being that neither of my parents or close relatives ever had type 1 diabetes. I was the first, and hopefully the only, type 1 diabetic in my family. My late grandfather had type 2 diabetes, but if you’ve read my blog long enough you’d know, type 1 and type 2 diabetes are MUCH different! (Type 2 diabetes has a stronger link to family history and lineage than type 1, although it too depends on environmental factors.)

What are the actual statistics of passing that risk gene on to your children? There are several types of variables: age of diagnosis, age during pregnancy, sex, and ethnicity. Men with type 1 diabetes have a higher risk of having children with diabetes (1 in 17). For women, probabilities vary based on when you got pregnant: having a child before the age of 25 gives you a higher risk of having a baby with diabetes (1 in 25). Thankfully, I am 27 years old and don’t have to worry about that statistic! But you are still at risk even if you have a baby after the age of 25 (1 in 100). Your child’s risk is doubled if you developed diabetes before age 11. If both you and your partner have type 1 diabetes, the risk is between 1 in 10 and 1 in 4. White people also have a higher chance of developing type 1 diabetes.

According to these statistics, it appears that I have about a 1 in 50 percent chance of my child actually developing type 1 diabetes. I was diagnosed before the age of 11, which unfortunately doubled my 1 in 100 risk. I feel much better knowing that those are my statistics, and I feel like I can manage that uncomfortable, uneasy feeling I had at the beginning of this post.

I have come to terms with the fact that I have type 1 diabetes. I am used to the finger pricks, insulin pump changes, CGM alarms, carb counting, high costs of supplies, the highs, the lows, and everything else that I go through on a daily basis.

I applaud all the parents out there who have had children with t1d. It terrifies me to think of my child(ren) having to live with type 1 diabetes. And if I had to learn about diabetes without being a t1d myself, phew! You are some really strong people.

Seeking Men!

We are seeking men with Type 1 Diabetes!

Bret Ringdahl, a T1D and PhD student at the University of Georgia, is researching barriers to care and insulin adherence (especially with boys and adult men). He has started a research program to better understand how T1D affects the lives of men and why men and women handle T1D differently. He has put out a have a brief survey that will hopefully lead him into other directions with the program.

We are interested in how gender and gender roles are related to your diabetes, especially in men. If you are at least 18 years old and would like to participate, please follow this link below. The survey will take approximately 20-25 minutes in total to complete.

Here is a link to the survey: https://ugeorgia.qualtrics.com/SE/?SID=SV_0fhHbp8JFe3mfHL

Please consider participating in his research study and distributing it widely on your blogs too. By completing the research survey, you will have the opportunity to register for one of two $50 gift cards. If you do not wish to participate in this research study but would like to enter into the drawing, please contact Bret directly at bret.ringdahl@uga.edu.

The person in charge of this study is Bret Ringdahl, M.A., of University of Georgia Department of Counseling and Human Development Services.  Bret is a doctoral student in counseling psychology and is being supervised in this project by Bernadette Heckman, Ph.D. For more information on them and their research programs, please email bret.ringdahl@uga.edu.

Glucose on Your Phone | New Dexcom G5

I am so excited to share!!! Dexcom is proud to announce the first completely mobile continuous glucose monitoring system for people living with Type 1 Diabetes. Via Blutetooth® technology that is now built into the transmitter, your glucose data is sent wirelessly from the Dexcom G5 Mobile transmitter to your compatible smart device (iOS Device). All information will automatically be sent your device, meaning you will no longer need to carry a receiver!!
(Receiver = This thing below that is always pictured on my blog.)Glucose on Your Phone | FDA Approves Dexcom G5 Mobile Continuous Glucose Monitoring (CGM) System | www.IAmAType1Diabetic.comDexcom announced today that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved the Dexcom G5® Mobile Continuous Glucose Monitoring (CGM) System. With wireless Bluetooth® technology built into the device transmitter, the G5 Mobile CGM System is the first and only fully mobile CGM system approved by the FDA for both adults and children as young as 2 years of age that sends glucose data directly to a smartphone, freeing users from the need to carry a separate receiver.  The new transmitter securely sends vital glucose information directly to an app on iOS-enabled devices for real-time diabetes management. Android applications will follow early next year. Like its predecessor, the G4 PLATINUM CGM with Share, users can also select up to five designated recipients, or “followers”.  These followers can remotely monitor a patient’s glucose information and receive alert notifications from almost anywhere. (Text taken from Arden’s Day.)

All text below is taken from the Dexcom’s new G5 webpage. When you are finished reading this, you may want to check it out.

Receive High and Low Glucose Alerts on your Mobile Device

With the Dexcom G5 Mobile CGM System, you’ll be alerted directly on your phone when you’re heading too high or too low. Alerts and alarm sounds can also be customized to appear as a text message, allowing for additional discretion and privacy.

Log Events Directly on your Mobile Device

Now you can keep track of events that affect your glucose levels on your mobile device. The Dexcom G5 Mobile CGM System provides a platform to enter customizable events, giving you the ability to track how your daily activities influence your glucose trends. Once entered into the smart device or receiver, these events can be viewed in Dexcom cloud-based reports, providing you with additional insights that can help to better manage your diabetes.

Smarter Than Ever

The Dexcom G5 Mobile app gives you the information you need quickly at-a-glance. Simply turn on your compatible smart device with the Dexcom G5 Mobile app and stay one step ahead of your diabetes. With readings every 5 minutes2, Dexcom G5 Mobile will give you the glucose information you need so you can just focus on where you’re headed in life!

Dexcom G5 Mobile CGM consists of 3 parts:*

Glucose on Your Phone | FDA Approves Dexcom G5 Mobile Continuous Glucose Monitoring (CGM) System | www.IAmAType1Diabetic.com

  • Small Sensor that measures glucose levels just underneath the skin.
  • Transmitter that is fastened on top of the sensor and sends data wirelessly to your compatible smart device or your receiver.
  • A Display Device which can be a compatible smart device with the Dexcom G5 Mobile app OR the Dexcom G5 Mobile Receiver. Either choice of display will show your glucose trends in vivid colors so you can easily see when it’s high, low or within range.
    *Smart Device not included with the Dexcom G5 Mobile CGM System

SHARE your CGM data with loved ones

Through secure wireless connections, the Dexcom G5 Mobile CGM System allows remote viewing of glucose levels, trends and data between the person with diabetes and their spouse, grandparent or other loved ones from their compatible smart device.

Married with Type 1 Diabetes

Married with Type 1 Diabetes | www.iamatype1diabetic.comTomorrow marks one year of marriage for my husband and I. It seems like it was only yesterday, but at the same time, we have done a lot in our lives together in this past year that I will never forget.

He has been there through the best of times (like us finally closing on a house of our own) and through the worst of times (like the passing away of my beloved grandfather who walked me down the aisle). I cannot thank my husband enough for always being there for me, supporting me and of course, helping to manage my diabetes.

With some really tough work, I have managed to get my a1C down to a whopping 6.2%. This has come from checking my Dexcom CGM constantly and checking my blood sugars anywhere from 8 – 12 times per day. My endocrinologist was very pleased with my test results and exclaimed “Keep up the good work! This range is consistent with the recommended limit (4.2-6.3%) for a non-diabetic population.” I have never felt so happy and accomplished of for doing something I’ve worked for so long to achieve.

The post below was originally written over three months ago, so you will notice some differences in my a1C numbers. The differences are most certainly good ones. We are working together, as a married couple, to achieve the perfect blood sugar and an even better life together!


I recently wrote this post for Suite D — an online community created for diabetics using or wanting to learn more about the Omnipod Insulin Pump. Click here to see this public post on their website.

Getting married is a big deal to everyone. But getting married, balancing life as a married couple, and living with type 1 diabetes is even more difficult. We argue about things most newly married couples don’t even have to think about, let alone have to worry about.

I have been a type 1 diabetic since I was 9 years old. I claim to know how to control my blood sugar levels. My husband understands the frustrations I go through on a daily basis. Because he is fortunate enough to live without this disease, it is hard for him to completely comprehend what makes my blood sugars spike and drop so rapidly and so unpredictable.

My husband has always been very supportive in helping to manage my diabetes. When we first started dating, and before I got a CGM, I scared him half to death when I didn’t wake up one morning because of low blood sugar. He had to rush home from work, give me some juice and wait for my sugars to go back up. Ever since then, he has woken me up every morning before leaving for work to make sure I check my blood sugar level in front of him. We also mutually decided that it made sense to set an alarm at 3:00am to check my blood sugar. This way, we could both avoid further frustrations that type 1 diabetes has to offer.

Recently we got into an argument because of my OmniPod meter vibrating. I have an alert set to check my blood sugar for dinner at 6:30pm. By that point, I had already checked my blood sugar, bolused and we had already ate. My meter was tucked away in my purse, and I was in the other room completely oblivious to the vibrating noise. He kept hearing it. He was annoyed, and I told him to just turn it off. He refused.

He didn’t think its ‘right’ to go into a woman’s purse. I told him he had my permission to do so, and being that I am now his wife, he shouldn’t feel that way. Yet he still refused and continued to complain for me to turn it off. Annoyed and irritated, I dropped everything else I was working on and turned off the alert.

Since we are newlyweds, a lot of people surrounding us have asked when we are going to start a family. Neither of us is ready for the full time commitment of a baby right now, but we also know it is going to take a lot extra planning before we can even start trying. I have been trying to get my a1c number down significantly so I can get the green light from my endocrinologist and OBGYN. I have read up on what it takes to plan accordingly. With that being said, I have been testing my blood sugars more often and set the high & low limits on my CGM in tighter control. We have worked together to start eating better and more balanced food. We have worked together to get better blood sugar levels, and he has been on my butt even more about giving myself more insulin to avoid a high blood sugar.

In the last 3 months, my a1c has come down .6% (from a 7.4% to a 6.8%). We both know it needs to be even lower before I can even think about stopping my birth control. For now, I am working on getting tighter control of my daily blood sugar levels, while he has become a great assistant in managing them. Without him yelling at me to “turn off my CGM” or to “check my blood sugar,” my blood sugars would still be as bad as they were when I was in college! Being newlyweds while trying to keep a much tighter control of my diabetes has been a positive learning curve for the both of us.

App for Diabetes | Kickstarter Campaign

Hello to all my followers! There is only a couple short days left to support this kickstarter campaign that will help parents to manage their child’s type 1 diabetes. Below is a press release about the campaign, but I want you to have the link to show your support and make a donation first. Hopefully, they can raise another $200 in the next 62 hours and reach their goal!!

 Click here to support Type1D App for Diabetes Management.

I just showed my support. You should join me!

App for Diabetes | Kickstarter Campaign | www.iamatype1diabetic.com


Type1D Announces New Collaborative App to Help Parents Better Manage Their Child’s Type 1 Diabetes

Startup Founded by Mother of a Child Recently Diagnosed With Type 1 Diabetes Uses Kickstarter Campaign and Feedback From Diabetes Community to Launch App; Beta Version to Be Showcased at the 2015 Children with Diabetes Friends for Life Conference

LOS ANGELES, CA–(Marketwired – Jul 7, 2015) – Type1D™, the developer of the only comprehensive Type 1 Diabetes management app that allows parents to team-manage their child’s diabetes, today announced the launch of a Kickstarter campaign (#KickType1D) to generate funds to launch the app by the end of 2015. The Type1D app, founded by the mother of a child recently diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes, will be showcased for the first time at the 2015 Children with Diabetes Friends for Life Conference taking place on July 6-12 in Lake Buena Vista, Florida. Conference attendees will be able to view the app and sign up to be a part of the beta test.

Type1D allows each caregiver to enter relevant diabetes management data into a single, centralized account to create an instant picture of glucose levels, carbohydrates, insulin doses, activities, and other key pieces of information. Additionally, when a parent updates the child’s carb ratio provided by a healthcare professional, the school nurse, babysitter and others assisting with management will instantly have the updates for the next insulin calculation. When the child hasn’t checked their blood sugar within the required timeframe, the parents can be alerted.

“In patients with diabetes, monitoring blood sugar levels is critical,” said Tyler D. Krohn, M.D., F.A.A.P., Board Certified Pediatrician, Children’s Hospital Los Angeles. “Keeping a vigilant eye on blood sugar levels helps provide healthcare providers and caregivers with a roadmap to better manage the patient’s diabetes and avoid complications. Using mobile health to enhance diabetes management can have tremendous benefits for people living with diabetes. Every patient is unique, and their sensitivity to insulin will change over time. Having a good comprehensive set of data is essential to tailor the treatment and maintain more normal blood sugars, resulting in better outcomes.”

Type1D is the result of one parent’s struggle to find an app that could help her safeguard her child when he was out of her arms. When Type1D Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer Julie Crawford’s son was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes on Halloween in 2014, she began to vigorously research existing monitoring methods for managing her son’s condition. Being a nurse herself, Crawford knew that there were multiple apps available, but none provided her with a comprehensive solution that incorporated an insulin calculator, connected with the caregivers, and had a simple-to-use interface and setup process.

“What started out as an effort to help my son has turned into a greater effort to create and share an app that can be used by others,” said Crawford. “A Type 1 Diabetes diagnosis can be overwhelming, but we hope the use of this app will help parents better transition to a ‘new normal’ and give them the power to best manage and monitor their child’s care. It can be hard for parents to keep track of their child’s condition because most children pass between various caregivers each day in their home, school, and during extracurricular activities. By having real-time visibility and centralized data, parents can better track and manage their child’s care.”

According to the American Diabetes Association, the efficacy of using smartphone-based glucose apps has improved the lives of American youth affected by Type 1 diabetes immensely. Today’s children have a much greater opportunity to live as asymptomatic as possible thanks to these innovations in technology. Apps that enable children to consistently self-monitor and relay data that is pertinent to their condition are important as they allow parents to have a long-distance picture of what the disease looks like on a day-to-day basis.

“Children have multiple caregivers that may be responsible for their care throughout the week, such as the parents, babysitter, school nurse, or grandparents,” said Crawford. “While there are numerous apps for diabetes monitoring, very few focus on Type 1 Diabetes and the needs of children. Type1D allows parents to create a team of caregivers, sharing data in a unified platform for better tracking and monitoring.”

About Type1D

Type1D, Inc. is the developer of the only comprehensive Type 1 Diabetes management app that allows parents to team-manage their child’s diabetes. The Type1D app is scheduled to be released for both iOS and Android platforms at the end of 2015. Type1D was co-founded in 2015 by Julie Crawford shortly after her 9-year-old son was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes. The company is dedicated to finding solutions to help families of children with Type 1 Diabetes better track and monitor their care. To learn more, visit www.type1d.com.

New House, New Projects, New Fiances, Same Diabetes!

Finally a blog post slightly more personable than diabetes or blood sugar related.

We have closed on our first house.

YAY!

There is a ton of work that has been done, and a ton more needs to be done. We are having a “Welcome to our New Home party” in just a short few weeks, and want to make sure the house is at least presentable (and partially moved in?) in time.

We bought a fixer-upper. We needed to install a new bathroom, a new kitchen, lots of yard work, a new patio, and of course a suitable paint job for our taste/style. It has and will continue to take a lot of work to get it maintained. However, my diabetes does not like that I’ve been working harder than before. Each. And. Every. Night!

Last night, my husband and I went to the house to do some minor patch up & prep work. Our goal was to have everything ready for my dad to come over to paint the door & window trims. I have purposely been leaving juice boxes at our house because low blood sugars have become a reoccurring thing. My blood sugar was steady when I got to the house (around 130mg/dL), and dropped quickly. Everyday I go to do some work, my blood sugar seems goes low.

A few weeks ago, we had pulled out a whole bunch of pachysandra plants had overgrown into our yard. I drank at least 4 juice boxes, had some snacks, and couldn’t tell you how long it took to get my blood sugar up above 65 mg/dL. My family was helping, and were constantly commenting that “your diabetes machine is going off again…”

I guess I have been getting lazy in recent years. I have not worked this hard in a very long time. Maybe my diabetes is trying to tell me that. The excitement of seeing projects get checked off the “To-Do” list has been a big motivator of mine. It has been a very exciting journey to this point in time. Diabetes just seems to be another part of that unusual but soon-to-be-normal routine.

We still have quite a few projects to complete before we can agree to start moving furniture into our house. You may not see many posts from me in the coming month, but note, I live with type 1 diabetes and it’s still effecting me every single hour of every single day. I need to adjust my basal rates so that I my blood sugars don’t fall so low. Hopefully in the midst of all this chaos and building our dream home, I can learn how to treat these lows a little better.